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Pig Feed? How much? What kind? Expand / Collapse
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Posted 1/3/2011 6:52:00 AM
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I am getting some heritage pigs this spring (red wattles) and in doing my planning I am wondering about feed. What does everyone feed their pigs? Purchased pig feed? What about just straight corn, it is the cheapest, about 6-7$ for a 50lb bag (here in central KY)? I want good nutrition and healthy animals, but I want to do all I can to keep my feed bill down. They will be pastured, so that will help.
Thanks.
Post #24309
Posted 1/3/2011 8:27:37 AM
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I am just finishing my pig, he is going to slaughter tomorrow. We have been feeding him on home made feed. We have a slow cooker setup in the garage and every 12 hours we put in a gallon of water. a small grain scoop (about 4" diameter and 6" long) of each: soy, barley and whole corn. to this we add kitchen scraps and if walmart has specials on onions, sweet potatoes and normal potatoes and apples we add those. after slow cooking for 12 hours we empty into a bucket and add another gallon and a half of water and a whole loaf of walmart $1 bread.

The pig got to 200# ish after 6 months and we lost a month of weight gain during the August heat wave - we actually lost the other pig during that time.
Post #24310
Posted 1/3/2011 8:28:25 AM
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Corn is a very good food for most animals, but it is not nutritionally complete. No one grain is. Pasturing will help reduce your feed bill, as will feeding all household waste food. You can't beat milk fed pork, so if you have a cow or goats, the extra milk helps to produce good pork. If you're going to continue to keep pigs, that helps justify getting a cow or goats, if you don't have them already. Many orchards will allow you to pick up fallen apples in the fall, and they are good too, as part of their diet. Some people set up restaurant and/or grocery store collections, to get their wasted food, but this is hard, dirty work. Whatever you feed, you should at least offer them a complete pelleted diet once a day. Many knowledgeable farmers keep pellets in front of them at all times, still supplementing with whatever else they can get. The pigs usually will eat all of these extras, before their pelleted diets. Eggs are good food too, and can be fed shells and all, but they should be cooked. Skimping on food quality is usually false economy, and shows itself in the final product.
Post #24311
Posted 1/3/2011 9:38:04 AM
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We are feeding our hogs ground corn with a supplement called 40% Swine Concentrate.  In the summer I feed surplus milk and garden surplus also.

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Post #24312
Posted 1/3/2011 9:49:12 AM
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Those are great tips!  I definitly don't want to skimp on food!  We are also hoping to get into dairy too sometime in the not too distant future (that is a whole other topic).
Post #24313
Posted 1/4/2011 9:02:21 AM
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If you are to feed straight corn you need to soak it (over night at the min) in some like 1/2 water and 1/2 milk so their stomach want spend a lot of time trying to break down the corn.

I've found that Ruby who is a 3/4 red wattle grew best with a high protein hog feed. She is 318 #s now and has gone through her 1st heat cycle. Ruby gets about 20 # per day and that is divided up into 2 feedings. Ruby was May 29, 2010

With our son's hereford pigs we weight out 5 lbs each (2xs a day) They get 2.5 #'s of a 16% hog feed and 2.5#s of a 12% all livestock sweet feed. Mr. G is 125 and Summergirl is 118 and they were born on the Sept 1, 2010.

Post #24337
Posted 1/4/2011 12:48:37 PM
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Yeah, I seem to remember watching something about feeding corn. They said that it was very hard to digest for mammals but birds can process it quicker because of the stones and grit they use in their stomachs (I think they are called gastroliths).
We use whole corn kernels but they are "cooked" for 12 hours.

The pig went quietly and weighed exactly 200#.
Post #24338
Posted 1/5/2011 6:58:27 AM
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I was talking to a guy at work and he was saying I need to get in contact with the day old bread stores, where you can get literally a truck load for $15.  The reason I am raising the pigs is to get healthy food and I am worried about the different chemicals and preservatives they use in the bread affecting the meat?

Any thoughts?

Post #24350
Posted 1/5/2011 7:40:50 AM
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I didn't even think about that, stupid of me really because we raise the animals for exactly the same reason as you (knowing where it comes from) It never occurred to me about the chemicals in the bread.

The pigs gone now but when we went to Walmart for our weekly shop we bought 14 loaves of the 99c bread for the pig, An expensive white for the daughter and youngest son and multigrain tasteless rubbish for me, the wife and the eldest son.
Post #24351
Posted 1/5/2011 9:44:07 AM
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We found our local tractor supply would have dried beets for like $7 for a big bag, I think a 25 lb bag but you add water to it & they plump up a lot.  We would pour some in a 5 gallon bucket & let it absorb the water before giving it to them.  We would also go to the local bread stores & get the bags of old bread & farmers markets for the produce they throw out & of course table scraps.  But we found a person on craigslist giving away out dated food from their stores so we would get that when it comes in.  There are also graineries around that you can buy corn & peanuts in bulk for really cheap.
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